Helen and Doug's Round the World Trip travel blog

Map of the Whitsundays

Playing in the fancy pool

Drinking underwater!

Paradise!

View from Hamilton Island over the Whitsundays

View from One Tree Hill, Hamilton Island

Helen's picture of Hill Inlet

Hill Inlet lookout

Famous swirly sands and incoming weather

Off we go....

In the spa at Stonehaven

Sunset over Stonehaven

Orange...

...then purple

Snorkelling at Blue Pearl Bay

Looking happy to be out of the water

A parrot fish

Elvis lives!

Driving back to harbour

Dangerous!


Took the short drive to Airlie Beach on Monday and paid for the trip - painful. Chilled out in this largely backpacker-dominated town for the evening before departing at lunch time on Tuesday.

The weather was very windy so we sailed out to Hamilton Island where we could moor safely in the sheltered harbour. This island is a very expensive holiday getaway for the rich and famous so we fitted right in. We all went to the hotel swimming pool which had a bar in the middle, and arrived just in time for happy hour! We got to know our shipmates and the crew before walking up to a lookout over the Whitsundays.

We had dinner on the boat which the crew barbequed out on the back deck, very nice! Then we headed to the Sailing Club for a drink.

On Wednesday we left Hamilton Island at 6am for Whitehaven Beach. It was a choppy journey but worth it. We moored around the corner from the beach and walked up to the lookout over Hill Inlet. This is a very famous view, on postcards to be found everywhere in Australia. We walked down to the beach and wandered around in the white silica sand and turquoise waters until the clouds started to gather and it began to pour with rain. It was a shame not to see it with bright blue skies but in a way it was good to see it in a different light.

We then sailed on up to Luncheon Bay where we could dive or snorkel. Lack of funds meant we had to snorkel as it was free but we probably saw as much as the divers did. We swam around for about an hour looking at the coral and hundreds of colourful fish - amazing.

We all returned to the boat for another good feed and a few cold beers. As the sun set over Stonehaven Bay we sat in the hot tub and watched the sky turn beautiful shades of orange, then pink, and finally purple. Then we watched a DVD on the big screen (it was a fancy boat!) before going to bed.

On Thursday morning we were up at 6.30am and in the water five minutes later for a final chance to snorkel. This time we had sailed on round to Blue Pearl Bay where a large fish called Elvis lives with many colourful little fish and of course several jellyfish, scary! It was better than Wednesday, and the best snorkel we've ever done. We are both looking forward to seeing more of the Reef from Cairns on Tuesday.



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